Janet Nyunmitji Forbes

Portrait of Aboriginal Artist Janet Nyunmitji Forbes

Janet was born a bush baby in the Warburton area. Her father, Nyunma came from Tawulbalyana and was a famous traditional owner for the region around Papulankutja. Her mother, Yuminiya was from Waltjatjarra country on the other side (south) of the Blackstone Ranges.

After attending school at the Warburton mission (c1974/75) Janet moved to Norseman to attend high school where she met and married Craig Morrison.They have three children.

The Forbes family decided to return to their country in the 1980’s settling in the new Papulankutja (Blackstone) which was founded by her father Fred Forbes.. She had three siblings, only her sister Dalma and herself remain.

Janet was a co-founder of the original Papulankutja Women’s Centre and recalls going to a meeting at Hamilton Downs in the Anangu Pitjantjatjara, Yankunyjatjara (APY) Lands to talk to government about money for the centre. In the early days she made batik cloth, just like the women at centres in  the APY Lands where it had started and encouraged.

Janet learnt to make  baskets from her older sister, Ruby Reid and was taught how to make punu (wooden artifacts) by her mother. Recently, Janet has moved into making sculptural forms from tjanpi (grass) with Tjanpi Desert Weavers.

Janet started painting in 2003 at the newly established Papulankutja Artists originally based at the Women’s Centre. Her paintings often depict the nganur (Bush Turkey) story, the Papulankutja story of the two goanna men or the Kungkarrangkalpa (Seven Sisters).

Further Artist Information

Community: Papulankutja (Blackstone) : WA

Artwork

Kunga dancing - Painting - Janet Nyunmitji Forbes